3rd Grade » Curriculum


Our Curriculum


IB Units of Inquiry

In contrast to studying each subject independently of the others, all students at Meridian study six big ideas, known as trans-disciplinary themes with concepts from all subjects woven throughout. Each grade level looks at a portion of the ideas in each theme, and each unit is designed around a main idea statement, called a central idea. Below are the central ideas for each of the third grade units, in the order we will study them.
  • How We Express Ourselves - Life experiences influence expression
  • How The World Works - Utilizing energy can bring change
  • Who We Are - Communities shape individuals
  • Where We Are In Time and Place - Adaptations alter environmental interactions
  • Sharing the Planet - Understanding how systems work together allows us to make meaningful contributions in our world  
  • How We Organize Ourselves - The choices we make have local and global consequences


Language Arts
Language Arts instruction for third grade students at Meridian varies from classroom to classroom but centers around rich instruction in reading, writing and word work.
During instruction time, our students invest in:
  • listening to reading, reading to self, reading aloud, studying words and writing.
  • developing strategies to effectively use language.
  • learning to write and speak for a specific purpose through the presentation of reports and journal writing
  • identifying the elements of a story to become a strategic reader
  • locating and using specific information in expository text
  • developing study skills including note taking, the use of reference materials, and interpreting graphs and diagrams
  • refining phonetic and decoding skills as competent spellers
  • analyzing words and phrases using homonyms, antonyms, synonyms, analogies, multiple meaning words and compound words
  • expanding their vocabulary by learning strategies for identifying unfamiliar words
  • developing reading comprehension skills such as: understanding fiction and nonfiction reading selections, identifying main ideas, sequencing events, recalling details, making predictions, drawing inferences, and understanding cause-and-effect relationships
  • continuing to learn and practice the steps of the writing process
  • learning proper grammar, spelling, and the mechanics of writing to enable more effective proofreading and communication skills
We use the Math in Focus (MIF) curriculum for all students at Meridian.
During instruction time, our students invest in:
  • focusing on fact families in addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division
  • continuing to develop strategies for multi-digit addition and subtraction problems
  • developing an understanding of multiplication as repeated addition and division and repeated subtraction
  • learning multiplication facts through the 12s
  • understanding large numbers in addition to working with small numbers and using equivalent fractions
  • studying of geometry, rounding and estimation, calculator skills, telling time, reading temperature and determining the value of money
  • applying the use of measurement skills including units in: linear, weight, and capacity with customary and metric units
  • performing probability experiments that provide information for analyzing data and predicting outcomes
  • using and sharing a variety of strategies for solving real world math problems. 

The third-grade science curriculum focuses on inquiry into the physical, earth, and life sciences using scientific processes. Within the area of physical sciences, students conduct inquiries into the properties and states of matter, forms of energy, forces and motion. In their study of earth science, students will study the formation and composition of soils, rapid changes to the earth's surface, landforms and natural resources. They will also investigate the solar system and the role of the sun in the water cycle.  Inquiring into life sciences will focus on characteristics of ecosystems and the traits of living organisms that allow them to survive in a particular ecosystem.

Social Studies 
The third-grade social studies curriculum focuses on communities both throughout history and current.  We study specific key players throughout history and their contributions to our society.  We talk about citizenship and government and our roles within it as well as scientific, economic and social movements that lead to change within our current system.